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NowThis | Bernie asked: how would you pay for free COVID-19 vaccines?

NowThis | Bernie asked: how would you pay for free COVID-19 vaccines?

(3:25) A nurse provides the answer.
NowThis YT channel Mar 11, 2020

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WalterEgo WalterEgo (71 days ago)

Can someone explain to me why we can't just print the money to pay for vaccines? It won't cause hyper-inflation. The price of bread won't shoot through the roof. 

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Can someone explain to me why we can't just print the money to pay for vaccines? It won't cause hyper-inflation. The price of bread won't shoot through the roof. 

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Guest: (71 days ago)

Hyperinflation, probably not.  Inflation, yes.

There will still be the same amount of vaccines, the same capability to produce them, so prices would likely increase.  

If a medical company gets $1 billion freshly printed notes to make vaccines, that's a huge amount of purchasing power.  

It's the old equation of exchange in action:  MV = PQ  ( amount of money X velocity of spending = price of goods X quantity of goods ) - they are both ways of expressing the GDP so have to be balanced.

Original comment

Hyperinflation, probably not.  Inflation, yes.

There will still be the same amount of vaccines, the same capability to produce them, so prices would likely increase.  

If a medical company gets $1 billion freshly printed notes to make vaccines, that's a huge amount of purchasing power.  

It's the old equation of exchange in action:  MV = PQ  ( amount of money X velocity of spending = price of goods X quantity of goods ) - they are both ways of expressing the GDP so have to be balanced.

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WalterEgo WalterEgo (71 days ago)

I think you're over-complicating it. When a company produces a vaccine, it won't come free. So the NHS will have to pay for it. That money can come from cutting services, increasing taxes, or borrowing it.

Or it can be printed. All that means is that new money comes into the economy via the medical company, its staff and suppliers - at a time when the economy sorely needs it.

I see no reason why the price of bread should go up.

Original comment

I think you're over-complicating it. When a company produces a vaccine, it won't come free. So the NHS will have to pay for it. That money can come from cutting services, increasing taxes, or borrowing it.

Or it can be printed. All that means is that new money comes into the economy via the medical company, its staff and suppliers - at a time when the economy sorely needs it.

I see no reason why the price of bread should go up.

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Guest: (71 days ago)

I'm not complicating anything old chum.  It's macro-economics in action.

Let's bring it back to basics.  Say we print a billion quid to give a medical company to develop enough vaccine to treat 20 million people.  Win-win.

But the researchers and workers it takes to produce the new vaccines, and the suppliers of the chemicals, the builders of the labs, etc. etc., all need to step up their game.  We need more, and faster, and unfortunately we have a finite supply of everything.

The medical company was doing other things before this collossal order too, so it has to figure out how to accommodate a new order alongside all the other work.  Again, limited labour, limited resources, massive demand.  

The workers can work elsewhere or for a different industry (and the pool of qualified people is limited), the suppliers still need to source chemicals for other projects, and the builders also have other gigs besides labs for coronavirus research. 

So what happens?  The prices go up for everyone.  They need to pay higher wages to entice a new workforce, pay higher prices for the chemicals (because there's now huge demand for the same limited supplies), and pay higher prices for building labs.  

In short, people have more money to spend on the same resources, so prices increase.  If the amount of money increases faster than the amount of products or services available, you get inflation.  That's why the mark of growth in an economy is not the amount of money it has, it's the GDP.
 

Original comment

I'm not complicating anything old chum.  It's macro-economics in action.

Let's bring it back to basics.  Say we print a billion quid to give a medical company to develop enough vaccine to treat 20 million people.  Win-win.

But the researchers and workers it takes to produce the new vaccines, and the suppliers of the chemicals, the builders of the labs, etc. etc., all need to step up their game.  We need more, and faster, and unfortunately we have a finite supply of everything.

The medical company was doing other things before this collossal order too, so it has to figure out how to accommodate a new order alongside all the other work.  Again, limited labour, limited resources, massive demand.  

The workers can work elsewhere or for a different industry (and the pool of qualified people is limited), the suppliers still need to source chemicals for other projects, and the builders also have other gigs besides labs for coronavirus research. 

So what happens?  The prices go up for everyone.  They need to pay higher wages to entice a new workforce, pay higher prices for the chemicals (because there's now huge demand for the same limited supplies), and pay higher prices for building labs.  

In short, people have more money to spend on the same resources, so prices increase.  If the amount of money increases faster than the amount of products or services available, you get inflation.  That's why the mark of growth in an economy is not the amount of money it has, it's the GDP.
 

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WalterEgo WalterEgo (70 days ago)

First you over-complicated it, then you doubled down and went off piste tumbling into the dark world of over-stretched medical companies.

Let's take a step back. The coronavirus crisis is going to cost the NHS a lot of money.

So where does that money come from? Why not print it? 

Printing the money - rather than raising taxes, cutting services or borrowing it - is a much more effective and direct way of pumping much needed new money into the economy. Much better than quantitive easing or reducing interest rates.

And the price of bread won't go up. Inflation happens when there is too much money swilling around and nowhere to spend it.

Original comment

First you over-complicated it, then you doubled down and went off piste tumbling into the dark world of over-stretched medical companies.

Let's take a step back. The coronavirus crisis is going to cost the NHS a lot of money.

So where does that money come from? Why not print it? 

Printing the money - rather than raising taxes, cutting services or borrowing it - is a much more effective and direct way of pumping much needed new money into the economy. Much better than quantitive easing or reducing interest rates.

And the price of bread won't go up. Inflation happens when there is too much money swilling around and nowhere to spend it.

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Guest: (70 days ago)

But isnt "just printing more money" what quantative easing is?

This will increase inflation, but how much inflation depends on a lot of things!

Generating new vaccines, and ultimatly production capacity, is not a quick job, even with unlimited money.

It can take years from building a new facility to seeing production start. I have seen medical devices become obsolete in the time a medical facility decides to start production and the first product comes off the production line! The production lines are "mothballed" before a single device is produced.

Original comment

But isnt "just printing more money" what quantative easing is?

This will increase inflation, but how much inflation depends on a lot of things!

Generating new vaccines, and ultimatly production capacity, is not a quick job, even with unlimited money.

It can take years from building a new facility to seeing production start. I have seen medical devices become obsolete in the time a medical facility decides to start production and the first product comes off the production line! The production lines are "mothballed" before a single device is produced.

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Guest: (70 days ago)

QE isn't really 'printing money' as such, that's a colloquialism.  QE is basically buying financial assets, and doesn't necessarily increase the amount of money in circulation.  It's only used as a last resort when interest rates can't get any lower.  But in essence you're right, neither QE nor printing money would help the situation regarding vaccines, and both would cause inflation.

Original comment

QE isn't really 'printing money' as such, that's a colloquialism.  QE is basically buying financial assets, and doesn't necessarily increase the amount of money in circulation.  It's only used as a last resort when interest rates can't get any lower.  But in essence you're right, neither QE nor printing money would help the situation regarding vaccines, and both would cause inflation.

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WalterEgo WalterEgo (69 days ago)

QE is a way of creating new money out of thin air to pump into a failing economy. It's just the way it's done is complicated and as far as I can see, a terrible way to boost an economy. Basically, the central bank creates new money to buy financial assets from banks. The hope is that the banks will feel flush and lend their newly acquired money to businesses, thereby injecting new money into the economy. The problem is that it's the banks who decide whether or not to lend, and who to - and their decisions are not dictated by society's needs, but by profit potential.

Much better would be to give that money directly to the poorer end of society - because poorer people tend to spend their money directly into the economy. Richer people tend to save or invest their money, which effectively "locks" it up. For example, money locked away in the Cayman Islands is not useful for businesses needing loans to survive or expand.

Yes, generating new vaccines is a long and expensive business, but what I'm asking is - how should the NHS pay for vaccines when they become available?

I'm arguing that creating new money to buy vaccines is a much better way of injecting money into the economy, than buying financial assets and hoping the banks will lend out. And there's the added benefit of saving lives.

Original comment

QE is a way of creating new money out of thin air to pump into a failing economy. It's just the way it's done is complicated and as far as I can see, a terrible way to boost an economy. Basically, the central bank creates new money to buy financial assets from banks. The hope is that the banks will feel flush and lend their newly acquired money to businesses, thereby injecting new money into the economy. The problem is that it's the banks who decide whether or not to lend, and who to - and their decisions are not dictated by society's needs, but by profit potential.

Much better would be to give that money directly to the poorer end of society - because poorer people tend to spend their money directly into the economy. Richer people tend to save or invest their money, which effectively "locks" it up. For example, money locked away in the Cayman Islands is not useful for businesses needing loans to survive or expand.

Yes, generating new vaccines is a long and expensive business, but what I'm asking is - how should the NHS pay for vaccines when they become available?

I'm arguing that creating new money to buy vaccines is a much better way of injecting money into the economy, than buying financial assets and hoping the banks will lend out. And there's the added benefit of saving lives.

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Guest: (70 days ago)

Gordon Bennett.  Don't ask for an explanation if you're not able to listen to the answer.

No offence but it really isn't that complicated.  This type of economic theory is taught at GCSE level, if not earlier.  "Pumping money into the economy" by printing it is a childish view of economics and that's me being polite.  It does. Not.  Work.

Take a closer look - you started talking about money coming into the economy via a medical company.  I ran with that as "the dark world of over-stretched medical companies" is exactly what we're working with, but now you consider that "off piste."

Take a step back - I told you that in any economy, inflation happens when the amount of money increases at a faster rate than the productivity, goods, or services.  The money is devalued.  Money is a currency of exchange, and its value is drawn from real output.  

Sorry, but I gave you examples in this exact situation, and you've just repeated the same naive nonsense.  I can't make it simpler.  I honestly can't.  I don't have the time to try and help you understand basic economic theory.  Pigeon chess.

I tried.  

Original comment

Gordon Bennett.  Don't ask for an explanation if you're not able to listen to the answer.

No offence but it really isn't that complicated.  This type of economic theory is taught at GCSE level, if not earlier.  "Pumping money into the economy" by printing it is a childish view of economics and that's me being polite.  It does. Not.  Work.

Take a closer look - you started talking about money coming into the economy via a medical company.  I ran with that as "the dark world of over-stretched medical companies" is exactly what we're working with, but now you consider that "off piste."

Take a step back - I told you that in any economy, inflation happens when the amount of money increases at a faster rate than the productivity, goods, or services.  The money is devalued.  Money is a currency of exchange, and its value is drawn from real output.  

Sorry, but I gave you examples in this exact situation, and you've just repeated the same naive nonsense.  I can't make it simpler.  I honestly can't.  I don't have the time to try and help you understand basic economic theory.  Pigeon chess.

I tried.  

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WalterEgo WalterEgo (69 days ago)

Gordon Bennett? The name's Walter.

You're right, it's not that complicated. I said you're complicating it (verb). You're looking at a detail (inflation) when I'm trying to get you to look at the bigger picture - the picture you seem to think is naive or "a childish view of economics".

Sometimes it's worthwhile going back to basics and checking that our "detailed" ideas are compatible.

Can we agree on these 2 points?
1 - All money in circulation was created out of thin air by a central bank. That's not a controversial statement - that's what fiat money is.

2 - The pound in your pocket has in its lifetime, changed value and hands many times, and will remain in the economic system - until it is taxed out. This is a theoretical model - I'm ignoring real-world realities like counterfeit money or money that is just lost.

If you agree with those 2 points - that money is created by central banks, and removed from the economy by tax - then in today's global economic turmoil, it makes sense to create new money to pay for vaccines, rather than taking the money from something else. 

What I'm really talking about is Modern Monetary Theory. MMT economists say that MMT is a more accurate description of how our economic system actually works. And from what I can understand, I think they are right. Check it out.

Original comment

Gordon Bennett? The name's Walter.

You're right, it's not that complicated. I said you're complicating it (verb). You're looking at a detail (inflation) when I'm trying to get you to look at the bigger picture - the picture you seem to think is naive or "a childish view of economics".

Sometimes it's worthwhile going back to basics and checking that our "detailed" ideas are compatible.

Can we agree on these 2 points?
1 - All money in circulation was created out of thin air by a central bank. That's not a controversial statement - that's what fiat money is.

2 - The pound in your pocket has in its lifetime, changed value and hands many times, and will remain in the economic system - until it is taxed out. This is a theoretical model - I'm ignoring real-world realities like counterfeit money or money that is just lost.

If you agree with those 2 points - that money is created by central banks, and removed from the economy by tax - then in today's global economic turmoil, it makes sense to create new money to pay for vaccines, rather than taking the money from something else. 

What I'm really talking about is Modern Monetary Theory. MMT economists say that MMT is a more accurate description of how our economic system actually works. And from what I can understand, I think they are right. Check it out.

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Guest: (68 days ago)

Trust you to endorse cult economics, Gordon.  Get your head around the basics of inflation before you try MMT.  MMT includes interesting ideas, but it doesn't prevent inflation when new money is introduced, is more vulnerable to supply shocks (which we're already encoutering with testing and vaccine development), and that's before you touch on the scary political implications, particularly now we're saddled with Boris's cabinet.  But now it's you who is overcomplicating things with MMT.

The smaller picture is how medical companies respond to a surge in demand for something that doesn't exist yet.

The bigger picture is how an increase in money without an increase in productivity leads to inflation.  

Take your pick.  

Original comment

Trust you to endorse cult economics, Gordon.  Get your head around the basics of inflation before you try MMT.  MMT includes interesting ideas, but it doesn't prevent inflation when new money is introduced, is more vulnerable to supply shocks (which we're already encoutering with testing and vaccine development), and that's before you touch on the scary political implications, particularly now we're saddled with Boris's cabinet.  But now it's you who is overcomplicating things with MMT.

The smaller picture is how medical companies respond to a surge in demand for something that doesn't exist yet.

The bigger picture is how an increase in money without an increase in productivity leads to inflation.  

Take your pick.  

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WalterEgo WalterEgo (63 days ago)

"The bigger picture is how an increase in money without an increase in productivity leads to inflation."  With respect, your bigger picture is tiny. It doesn't even cover inflation. Inflation also happens when there is no change in productivity - like when the price of oil goes up increasing the cost of production, which gets passed on to consumers. Or when we move to WTO rules - and have to pay tariffs.

"Get your head around the basics of inflation before you try MMT"  It's the other way around. If you were learning to play guitar, you wouldn't start with diminished chords, you'd get your head around a few basics first, like strumming.

When it comes to economics, MMT is the outer layer. Economic ideas like free-markets or Keynesian economics sit within MMT because MMT is a description of how our fiat economy actually works - in a similar way to how natural selection describes how species change over time.

We are so ingrained into thinking of a fiat economy as we think of our personal finances, when they are fundamentally different. If I borrow £1 from you, I can't invent £1 out of thin air to pay you back. I have to get that £1 from somewhere - ie. it already exists. And you didn't invent that £1 that you lent me, it also existed before you got it. So in our little deal, no money was created or removed in the economy as a whole, money just moved around.

But all money in the economy came into existence out of thin air, including the £1 that you lent me. So if money is printed (created out of thin air) to pay for vaccines, if we taxpayers pay back that money, who are we paying back? The air? That's one of the logical inconsistencies that comes from thinking of the economy as personal or business finances. The economy is fundamentally different because it is driven by fiat money.

I recommend you investigate MMT. It is highly relevant today. Will governments around the world printing trillions to get us through the coronavirus crisis, cause global hyperinflation? Should this money be paid back in the future? Is there a limit to how much we can spend? These are all questions which an accurate understanding of how a fiat economy fundamentally works is crucial.

In a nutshell, MMT accepts that there is no limit to the amount of money that can be created, because that is a fact. So the conversation changes from "how do we pay for it?", to "is it a good idea?".

For example: Should we cancel student debt? Old school thinking is: how do we pay for it? MMT thinking is: Why remove money from the economy? After all, there's infinite money in the thin air where the money came from in the first place. Cancelling student debt would actually boost the economy as students spend the money on goods and services rather than paying back thin air. Once you accept the reality of fiat money, it's easy to see why our methods of controlling the money supply - like QE or interest rates - are so ineffective.

Original comment

"The bigger picture is how an increase in money without an increase in productivity leads to inflation."  With respect, your bigger picture is tiny. It doesn't even cover inflation. Inflation also happens when there is no change in productivity - like when the price of oil goes up increasing the cost of production, which gets passed on to consumers. Or when we move to WTO rules - and have to pay tariffs.

"Get your head around the basics of inflation before you try MMT"  It's the other way around. If you were learning to play guitar, you wouldn't start with diminished chords, you'd get your head around a few basics first, like strumming.

When it comes to economics, MMT is the outer layer. Economic ideas like free-markets or Keynesian economics sit within MMT because MMT is a description of how our fiat economy actually works - in a similar way to how natural selection describes how species change over time.

We are so ingrained into thinking of a fiat economy as we think of our personal finances, when they are fundamentally different. If I borrow £1 from you, I can't invent £1 out of thin air to pay you back. I have to get that £1 from somewhere - ie. it already exists. And you didn't invent that £1 that you lent me, it also existed before you got it. So in our little deal, no money was created or removed in the economy as a whole, money just moved around.

But all money in the economy came into existence out of thin air, including the £1 that you lent me. So if money is printed (created out of thin air) to pay for vaccines, if we taxpayers pay back that money, who are we paying back? The air? That's one of the logical inconsistencies that comes from thinking of the economy as personal or business finances. The economy is fundamentally different because it is driven by fiat money.

I recommend you investigate MMT. It is highly relevant today. Will governments around the world printing trillions to get us through the coronavirus crisis, cause global hyperinflation? Should this money be paid back in the future? Is there a limit to how much we can spend? These are all questions which an accurate understanding of how a fiat economy fundamentally works is crucial.

In a nutshell, MMT accepts that there is no limit to the amount of money that can be created, because that is a fact. So the conversation changes from "how do we pay for it?", to "is it a good idea?".

For example: Should we cancel student debt? Old school thinking is: how do we pay for it? MMT thinking is: Why remove money from the economy? After all, there's infinite money in the thin air where the money came from in the first place. Cancelling student debt would actually boost the economy as students spend the money on goods and services rather than paying back thin air. Once you accept the reality of fiat money, it's easy to see why our methods of controlling the money supply - like QE or interest rates - are so ineffective.

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Guest: (62 days ago)

Distractions.  The bigger picture doesn't need to cover all causes of inflation.  The price of oil?  Please.  The bigger picture needs to cover the cause that we're discussing - namely increasing money without increasing productivity.  This is such a basic concept, it really isn't worth continuing until you get that bit. 

I doubt that you have a very rounded understanding of MMT judging by the ways you describe it.  There is nothing in MMT that denies inflation occurs where a surge of new money overwhelms limited resources, limited labour, and limited production which is the case in point.  In fact, that inflation is very much a part (and a primary concern) of Chartalism in general, which is why it's crucial to understand inflation before trying to understand MMT (like strumming and diminished chords).  That's all you need to know.   

You asked why we can't print money to pay for vaccines.  Creating new money without increasing productivity leads to inflation.  You were wrong to suggest printing money, and wrong to call on MMT to justify printing money, because even in an economy run according to its principles (which ours is not), MMT is famously not a get-out-of-jail-free card and does not negate inflation in these conditions.  Besides, MMT would need a complete overhaul of central banking, political thought, taxation, currency exchange, the labour market, legal safeguards, and indeed public sentiment, along with countless other aspects, to even be remotely viable.  So that's why we can't print money to pay for things we needed a month ago.  OK? 

I recommend you investigate basic macroeconomic theory, including the equation for exchange when you're ready.  It may not feel as interesting or daring, but if you're open to it, it will give you the answers you are seeking.

Original comment

Distractions.  The bigger picture doesn't need to cover all causes of inflation.  The price of oil?  Please.  The bigger picture needs to cover the cause that we're discussing - namely increasing money without increasing productivity.  This is such a basic concept, it really isn't worth continuing until you get that bit. 

I doubt that you have a very rounded understanding of MMT judging by the ways you describe it.  There is nothing in MMT that denies inflation occurs where a surge of new money overwhelms limited resources, limited labour, and limited production which is the case in point.  In fact, that inflation is very much a part (and a primary concern) of Chartalism in general, which is why it's crucial to understand inflation before trying to understand MMT (like strumming and diminished chords).  That's all you need to know.   

You asked why we can't print money to pay for vaccines.  Creating new money without increasing productivity leads to inflation.  You were wrong to suggest printing money, and wrong to call on MMT to justify printing money, because even in an economy run according to its principles (which ours is not), MMT is famously not a get-out-of-jail-free card and does not negate inflation in these conditions.  Besides, MMT would need a complete overhaul of central banking, political thought, taxation, currency exchange, the labour market, legal safeguards, and indeed public sentiment, along with countless other aspects, to even be remotely viable.  So that's why we can't print money to pay for things we needed a month ago.  OK? 

I recommend you investigate basic macroeconomic theory, including the equation for exchange when you're ready.  It may not feel as interesting or daring, but if you're open to it, it will give you the answers you are seeking.

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WalterEgo WalterEgo (59 days ago)

Are you caught up in some GCSE text book loop? Was there no bullet point about the price of oil?

I asked, why don't we print money to pay for vaccines. You said, because inflation. That is a very unsatisfactory answer straight out of a text book, that is without relevance to the question. It's like me asking, should I stick my toe in a shark-infested ocean, and you say sea level rise. If you said "go ahead, there are no sharks in this ocean", then you'd be providing a relevant answer. Sea level rise is technically correct, but it is a distraction.

If you really do believe inflation is THE reason for not printing money for vaccines, then let's talk about how much inflation is acceptable. After all, a small amount of inflation is a good thing, and we both agree hyperinflation is unlikely, so how much is too much?

"I doubt that you have a very rounded understanding of MMT judging by the ways you describe it." I found out about MMT through watching a number of videos of MMT economists talking about it. You found out by looking at Wikipedia. Don't get me wrong, Wikipedia is a great way to begin investigating topics, but it lacks the insight you gain from listening to people who have spent years thinking deeply about it. If you think "it's crucial to understand inflation before trying to understand MMT" , then I pray you're not a teacher. You're still stuck deep in your text book. Try thinking more and reciting less.

The thing I got from MMT economists, is that MMT is a theory. The clue is in the name. It is not an "...ism". There aren't MMT policies as such, but there are policies built on an MMT framework. IMO we should design policies rooted in MMT. It's like following the principle behind first principles thinking - build up from a solid base. In economics, MMT is the most solid base we have so far.

Our current policies are rooted in a personal/business account framework - ie. there's no magic money tree. That is factually incorrect, so it is not a solid base. Like it or not, fiat money IS a magic money tree. There is no limit to how much money a central bank can print.

If we print money to pay for vaccines, we create a deficit that has to be paid back at some point. But MMT says that that is not what actually happens. The deficit is an invention to make our personal/business account framework (which is fundamentally incorrect) make sense. 

So with governments all around the world printing trillions to get through this crisis, the question "can we afford it?" is surfacing. From an MMT perspective, that is not a useful question because the answer, whatever the spending is for, is always the same - yes, everything is affordable because we can always print the money. 

Another question surfacing is how we pay off the huge global deficit we are creating in this crisis. From an MMT perspective, the question doesn't make sense. Why remove trillions from an economy to pay back a deficit that was created out of thin air. After all, we can print money to pay the thin air. The question only make sense if your base is a personal/business account framework. And that is not the reality of fiat money.

What an understanding of MMT does, is that it changes the conversation. Rather than "can we afford it?" we should be asking "should we do it?". And when we ask that question, there's a lot more to think about than the definition of inflation you remembered from school.

Original comment

Are you caught up in some GCSE text book loop? Was there no bullet point about the price of oil?

I asked, why don't we print money to pay for vaccines. You said, because inflation. That is a very unsatisfactory answer straight out of a text book, that is without relevance to the question. It's like me asking, should I stick my toe in a shark-infested ocean, and you say sea level rise. If you said "go ahead, there are no sharks in this ocean", then you'd be providing a relevant answer. Sea level rise is technically correct, but it is a distraction.

If you really do believe inflation is THE reason for not printing money for vaccines, then let's talk about how much inflation is acceptable. After all, a small amount of inflation is a good thing, and we both agree hyperinflation is unlikely, so how much is too much?

"I doubt that you have a very rounded understanding of MMT judging by the ways you describe it." I found out about MMT through watching a number of videos of MMT economists talking about it. You found out by looking at Wikipedia. Don't get me wrong, Wikipedia is a great way to begin investigating topics, but it lacks the insight you gain from listening to people who have spent years thinking deeply about it. If you think "it's crucial to understand inflation before trying to understand MMT" , then I pray you're not a teacher. You're still stuck deep in your text book. Try thinking more and reciting less.

The thing I got from MMT economists, is that MMT is a theory. The clue is in the name. It is not an "...ism". There aren't MMT policies as such, but there are policies built on an MMT framework. IMO we should design policies rooted in MMT. It's like following the principle behind first principles thinking - build up from a solid base. In economics, MMT is the most solid base we have so far.

Our current policies are rooted in a personal/business account framework - ie. there's no magic money tree. That is factually incorrect, so it is not a solid base. Like it or not, fiat money IS a magic money tree. There is no limit to how much money a central bank can print.

If we print money to pay for vaccines, we create a deficit that has to be paid back at some point. But MMT says that that is not what actually happens. The deficit is an invention to make our personal/business account framework (which is fundamentally incorrect) make sense. 

So with governments all around the world printing trillions to get through this crisis, the question "can we afford it?" is surfacing. From an MMT perspective, that is not a useful question because the answer, whatever the spending is for, is always the same - yes, everything is affordable because we can always print the money. 

Another question surfacing is how we pay off the huge global deficit we are creating in this crisis. From an MMT perspective, the question doesn't make sense. Why remove trillions from an economy to pay back a deficit that was created out of thin air. After all, we can print money to pay the thin air. The question only make sense if your base is a personal/business account framework. And that is not the reality of fiat money.

What an understanding of MMT does, is that it changes the conversation. Rather than "can we afford it?" we should be asking "should we do it?". And when we ask that question, there's a lot more to think about than the definition of inflation you remembered from school.

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Guest: (56 days ago)

I had to learn about MMT before it was trendy and agreed with the same consensus that still exists; the good ideas it contains are already expressed in post-Keynsian theory, and the bad make it unworkable for real-world situations, especially ours.  I’d wager you only became aware of it when AOC started peddling it.  However, I haven’t watched any videos so maybe that’s where my education is lacking – too many textbooks and seminars and not enough animations! 

[Joking aside, be cautious with Youtube education; you can get persuaded by fanatics and suckered into a zeitgeist, swallowing a fragment of a theory, and regurgitating it in a way that doesn’t work.  Without that wider understanding to hang these knowledge fragments onto, you end up getting confused.  Maybe it’s a generational thing.]

I explained WHY inflation would occur in this situation, giving you real-world examples.  The impact of new currency on medical facilities isn’t covered in GCSE textbooks, Youtube videos, or the lectures I’ve sat in on… which is why you got scared and said I was going off-piste.  You’re stuck deep in Youtube soundbites.  This is why you need some basic macroeconomic knowledge under your belt - so you can apply it to new situations.  “Try think more.”

“It is not an "...ism".  Awkward.  Statements like this further expose your ignorance on the subject - do yourself a favour and look up Chartalism and… dare I say… neo-Chartalism.  Looks familiar?  Anyway, you still haven’t said why my answer is incorrect:  MMT doesn’t let us print money without inflation when there’s a limit to productivity (nothing does – it’s logic, not economics).  Even if you believe extensive taxation can be used to control inflation or lower demand, you can’t get away from that simple fact (and THAT is a base for first principles thinking – a universal truth that can’t be avoided).  The limits on our productivity and supplies have been made crystal clear recently and all inflation beyond our capacity and productivity is detrimental, and frankly pointless.  Those real limits would continue to be the barrier for securing urgently needed medical supplies.  

You want a debate about the pros and cons of MMT but that’s a different story - it has been done to death and isn’t much interest to me, any more than 9-11 conspiracies.  Don’t get me wrong, there is a case to be made that elements of MMT could be applied to other repercussions of COVID-19 over a longer term, but the simple answer to your original question is this: printing money could not help with the immediate need for vaccines .  Everything else is a distraction.

I’m no economist, and you certainly aren’t, so I recommend you consider the opinions of those who “have spent years thinking about” MMT.  I’m not saying that existing systems are always better, or that majority rules, but respect the expert consensus I mentioned earlier and not just to the disciples you’ve cherry-picked. 

My lesson learned is that when you ask a question, you’re not really looking for an answer.  Was it a rare moment of humility, an awareness of a gap in your knowledge that you earnestly wanted to fill?  Silly me - you’re never looking for answers.  When you ask a question, you’ve already decided on the answer, and you’re looking for an opportunity to get on your soap-box and regurgitate Youtube clips.  What a pity.

Original comment

I had to learn about MMT before it was trendy and agreed with the same consensus that still exists; the good ideas it contains are already expressed in post-Keynsian theory, and the bad make it unworkable for real-world situations, especially ours.  I’d wager you only became aware of it when AOC started peddling it.  However, I haven’t watched any videos so maybe that’s where my education is lacking – too many textbooks and seminars and not enough animations! 

[Joking aside, be cautious with Youtube education; you can get persuaded by fanatics and suckered into a zeitgeist, swallowing a fragment of a theory, and regurgitating it in a way that doesn’t work.  Without that wider understanding to hang these knowledge fragments onto, you end up getting confused.  Maybe it’s a generational thing.]

I explained WHY inflation would occur in this situation, giving you real-world examples.  The impact of new currency on medical facilities isn’t covered in GCSE textbooks, Youtube videos, or the lectures I’ve sat in on… which is why you got scared and said I was going off-piste.  You’re stuck deep in Youtube soundbites.  This is why you need some basic macroeconomic knowledge under your belt - so you can apply it to new situations.  “Try think more.”

“It is not an "...ism".  Awkward.  Statements like this further expose your ignorance on the subject - do yourself a favour and look up Chartalism and… dare I say… neo-Chartalism.  Looks familiar?  Anyway, you still haven’t said why my answer is incorrect:  MMT doesn’t let us print money without inflation when there’s a limit to productivity (nothing does – it’s logic, not economics).  Even if you believe extensive taxation can be used to control inflation or lower demand, you can’t get away from that simple fact (and THAT is a base for first principles thinking – a universal truth that can’t be avoided).  The limits on our productivity and supplies have been made crystal clear recently and all inflation beyond our capacity and productivity is detrimental, and frankly pointless.  Those real limits would continue to be the barrier for securing urgently needed medical supplies.  

You want a debate about the pros and cons of MMT but that’s a different story - it has been done to death and isn’t much interest to me, any more than 9-11 conspiracies.  Don’t get me wrong, there is a case to be made that elements of MMT could be applied to other repercussions of COVID-19 over a longer term, but the simple answer to your original question is this: printing money could not help with the immediate need for vaccines .  Everything else is a distraction.

I’m no economist, and you certainly aren’t, so I recommend you consider the opinions of those who “have spent years thinking about” MMT.  I’m not saying that existing systems are always better, or that majority rules, but respect the expert consensus I mentioned earlier and not just to the disciples you’ve cherry-picked. 

My lesson learned is that when you ask a question, you’re not really looking for an answer.  Was it a rare moment of humility, an awareness of a gap in your knowledge that you earnestly wanted to fill?  Silly me - you’re never looking for answers.  When you ask a question, you’ve already decided on the answer, and you’re looking for an opportunity to get on your soap-box and regurgitate Youtube clips.  What a pity.

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WalterEgo WalterEgo (55 days ago)

I asked a topical question - why not print money to pay for vaccines? - and you regurgitated a text book answer - inflation. And you're still harping on about it. The problem with your answer is not that it is wrong, but that it is literally useless. It is impossible to measure the inflationary effect of printing money for vaccines on the price of apples, and why would you want to. The answer is worse than useless because it detracts from discussing something useful. Like: if we don't print the money, then where does the NHS get it from? Through an MMT lens, the conversation changes, and that leads to different questions and ultimately different policies. 

So now that the world is printing trillions and productivity is grinding to a snail's pace, what does your text book say is going to happen? Should we expect global hyper-inflation?

Original comment

I asked a topical question - why not print money to pay for vaccines? - and you regurgitated a text book answer - inflation. And you're still harping on about it. The problem with your answer is not that it is wrong, but that it is literally useless. It is impossible to measure the inflationary effect of printing money for vaccines on the price of apples, and why would you want to. The answer is worse than useless because it detracts from discussing something useful. Like: if we don't print the money, then where does the NHS get it from? Through an MMT lens, the conversation changes, and that leads to different questions and ultimately different policies. 

So now that the world is printing trillions and productivity is grinding to a snail's pace, what does your text book say is going to happen? Should we expect global hyper-inflation?

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Guest: (54 days ago)

It’s funny you keep going back to the price of bread or apples as your benchmark for inflation, but it’s a touch more complex.  Crazy, but it’s not just everyday edibles in the CPI.  Things like medication and medical equipment are included, and there are other measures of inflation too, including Tender Price and Resource Price Indices (for construction).  Accordingly, you can imagine how the prices on various services and products may be affected when 20 million non-existent vaccines are ordered from non-existent medical laboratories staffed by non-existent qualified professionals.  See?  Anyway, you’ve learned that printing money would cause inflation (even if you don’t fully appreciate that term) so let’s move on.  
You’re playing semantics when you say MMT “changes the conversation”.  Meaningless.  We all know governments can print money on a whim (that wasn’t new to neo-Chartalism) so the question apparently is “is it a good idea?"  Awesome, but the answer is still no.  They usually don’t because it is not a good idea.  It’s dangerous to be promoting populist cure-all theories for real and urgent issues, when they are discounted by most experts.  You're wasting time.

So where does the money for vaccines come from?  Firstly, groups like CEPI are funding a lot in terms of the urgent research (look them up), but the rest is basically borrowing.  Our debt is something like 80% of our GDP.  After the war it was over 200%.  Borrowing money does not cause inflation - it’s not ideal, no one’s a fan, but certainly preferable to printing money or fringe theory economics from some leftist zeitgeist.

Why don’t we print money for vaccines when we physically can do so?

A)  The main barrier to creating the vaccines isn’t a physical supply of money.  It’s the limits on productivity, supplies, resources, labour, clinical trials etc.  I’ve explained that, and you called it ‘off piste’ because it wasn’t in your Youtube clips.  Acknowledging this issue and trying to fix it is far from useless.  
B)  When new money is introduced and productivity cannot increase to match its value, you get Demand-Pull inflation.  This inflation, beyond productivity, is detrimental.  You know this now. 
C)  Genuine MMT acolytes don’t deny this inflation, but suggest it can be controlled with other measures, including taxation.  This has numerous problems, but in terms of your question, point A would still apply – taxation can’t compensate for the issues in production and supply.  That’s why we’re not printing money to get vaccines.

Believe it or not, textbooks have been written by experts who have studied real-world situations, reviewed by peers who also know what they’re talking about, and fully cited and referenced so you can go on to understand how everything fits together.  Video content has its place, but the fact you’re turning up your nose at textbooks in favour of video soundbites is a tragic indictment of your generation.

Original comment

It’s funny you keep going back to the price of bread or apples as your benchmark for inflation, but it’s a touch more complex.  Crazy, but it’s not just everyday edibles in the CPI.  Things like medication and medical equipment are included, and there are other measures of inflation too, including Tender Price and Resource Price Indices (for construction).  Accordingly, you can imagine how the prices on various services and products may be affected when 20 million non-existent vaccines are ordered from non-existent medical laboratories staffed by non-existent qualified professionals.  See?  Anyway, you’ve learned that printing money would cause inflation (even if you don’t fully appreciate that term) so let’s move on.  
You’re playing semantics when you say MMT “changes the conversation”.  Meaningless.  We all know governments can print money on a whim (that wasn’t new to neo-Chartalism) so the question apparently is “is it a good idea?"  Awesome, but the answer is still no.  They usually don’t because it is not a good idea.  It’s dangerous to be promoting populist cure-all theories for real and urgent issues, when they are discounted by most experts.  You're wasting time.

So where does the money for vaccines come from?  Firstly, groups like CEPI are funding a lot in terms of the urgent research (look them up), but the rest is basically borrowing.  Our debt is something like 80% of our GDP.  After the war it was over 200%.  Borrowing money does not cause inflation - it’s not ideal, no one’s a fan, but certainly preferable to printing money or fringe theory economics from some leftist zeitgeist.

Why don’t we print money for vaccines when we physically can do so?

A)  The main barrier to creating the vaccines isn’t a physical supply of money.  It’s the limits on productivity, supplies, resources, labour, clinical trials etc.  I’ve explained that, and you called it ‘off piste’ because it wasn’t in your Youtube clips.  Acknowledging this issue and trying to fix it is far from useless.  
B)  When new money is introduced and productivity cannot increase to match its value, you get Demand-Pull inflation.  This inflation, beyond productivity, is detrimental.  You know this now. 
C)  Genuine MMT acolytes don’t deny this inflation, but suggest it can be controlled with other measures, including taxation.  This has numerous problems, but in terms of your question, point A would still apply – taxation can’t compensate for the issues in production and supply.  That’s why we’re not printing money to get vaccines.

Believe it or not, textbooks have been written by experts who have studied real-world situations, reviewed by peers who also know what they’re talking about, and fully cited and referenced so you can go on to understand how everything fits together.  Video content has its place, but the fact you’re turning up your nose at textbooks in favour of video soundbites is a tragic indictment of your generation.

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WalterEgo WalterEgo (51 days ago)

"You’re playing semantics when you say MMT “changes the conversation”.  Meaningless." Meaningless to you because you don't get it ... yet. You are looking through the lens of a textbook. Regurgitating a bullet point is one thing, applying it in the real world is a different kettle of fish.

Let's analyse through an MMT lens your 3 reasons for not printing money to pay for vaccines, and see if the conversation changes.

A) "The main barrier to creating the vaccines isn’t a physical supply of money.  It’s the limits on productivity, supplies, resources, labour, clinical trials etc." Great point that is totally consistent with MMT, but it's answering a different question. At the point a vaccine becomes available to the NHS, all of what you talk about is history. The question is: where does the NHS get the money to pay for the millions of shots needed for the population? 

When you answered 'inflation', you are looking at only one immeasurable consequence of printing money as defined by your favourite textbook. Like I said, literally useless.

But through an MMT lens, the money the NHS needs to pay for vaccines is either new money, or money that already exists. So if it's not new money, then it has to "redirected" from somewhere else, either from within or outside of the NHS. And if that new money is "borrowed", that also has to come from something else, but at a later date. Notice the change in conversation?

B) "When new money is introduced and productivity cannot increase to match its value, you get Demand-Pull inflation.  This inflation, beyond productivity, is detrimental." Thanks for educating me. If you don't understand why that is "literally useless", then give me an estimate of how much inflation is likely to increase  from printing money for vaccines -  or at least a methodology for acquiring a meaningful estimate. Then you can justify why you think the inflation rise would be too high, if it is at all. Since current UK inflation is about 1.5%, and textbook says ideal inflation is 2-3%, printing money for vaccines would have to increase inflation by more than 1.5%, otherwise it's beneficial all round. And we wouldn't want that would we? 

C) "Genuine MMT acolytes don’t deny this inflation, but suggest it can be controlled with other measures, including taxation." I agree. I didn't deny printing money causes inflation either. And of course inflation can be controlled by other methods, but that's a different topic.

Don't get me wrong about textbooks. Textbooks are important for all sorts of reasons, but they can't give a good overall picture outsite of their brief. A textbook is a jigsaw piece in the bigger picture. MMT is a cluster of jigsaw pieces (of which inflation is one) that form a picture of how our economic system works. And too me, it simply makes sense.  

If I had to describe one message we can learn from MMT, it's that money is not the constraining factor in an economic system. Real world things are the constraints - resources, supplies, workforce, expertise, geography, time etc. Which is exactly what you alluded to when you went off piste.

Money is the oil in the economic machine that lubricates the cogs so everything runs smoothly. When a new cog is added, new oil is needed. Otherwise it has to come from another cog. Printing money is necessary if the economy is to grow. When I buy something from Sainsbury's, my money leaves my pocket, but stays in the machine and circulates around other cogs as Sainsbury's spends it. But when I pay the government (tax), that money leaves the machine and disappears. Essentially, it returns to the thin air it came from. So a healthy economy would have its cogs (businesses, services etc) properly lubricated so the whole machine can hum along nicely and we all live happily ever after.

Original comment

"You’re playing semantics when you say MMT “changes the conversation”.  Meaningless." Meaningless to you because you don't get it ... yet. You are looking through the lens of a textbook. Regurgitating a bullet point is one thing, applying it in the real world is a different kettle of fish.

Let's analyse through an MMT lens your 3 reasons for not printing money to pay for vaccines, and see if the conversation changes.

A) "The main barrier to creating the vaccines isn’t a physical supply of money.  It’s the limits on productivity, supplies, resources, labour, clinical trials etc." Great point that is totally consistent with MMT, but it's answering a different question. At the point a vaccine becomes available to the NHS, all of what you talk about is history. The question is: where does the NHS get the money to pay for the millions of shots needed for the population? 

When you answered 'inflation', you are looking at only one immeasurable consequence of printing money as defined by your favourite textbook. Like I said, literally useless.

But through an MMT lens, the money the NHS needs to pay for vaccines is either new money, or money that already exists. So if it's not new money, then it has to "redirected" from somewhere else, either from within or outside of the NHS. And if that new money is "borrowed", that also has to come from something else, but at a later date. Notice the change in conversation?

B) "When new money is introduced and productivity cannot increase to match its value, you get Demand-Pull inflation.  This inflation, beyond productivity, is detrimental." Thanks for educating me. If you don't understand why that is "literally useless", then give me an estimate of how much inflation is likely to increase  from printing money for vaccines -  or at least a methodology for acquiring a meaningful estimate. Then you can justify why you think the inflation rise would be too high, if it is at all. Since current UK inflation is about 1.5%, and textbook says ideal inflation is 2-3%, printing money for vaccines would have to increase inflation by more than 1.5%, otherwise it's beneficial all round. And we wouldn't want that would we? 

C) "Genuine MMT acolytes don’t deny this inflation, but suggest it can be controlled with other measures, including taxation." I agree. I didn't deny printing money causes inflation either. And of course inflation can be controlled by other methods, but that's a different topic.

Don't get me wrong about textbooks. Textbooks are important for all sorts of reasons, but they can't give a good overall picture outsite of their brief. A textbook is a jigsaw piece in the bigger picture. MMT is a cluster of jigsaw pieces (of which inflation is one) that form a picture of how our economic system works. And too me, it simply makes sense.  

If I had to describe one message we can learn from MMT, it's that money is not the constraining factor in an economic system. Real world things are the constraints - resources, supplies, workforce, expertise, geography, time etc. Which is exactly what you alluded to when you went off piste.

Money is the oil in the economic machine that lubricates the cogs so everything runs smoothly. When a new cog is added, new oil is needed. Otherwise it has to come from another cog. Printing money is necessary if the economy is to grow. When I buy something from Sainsbury's, my money leaves my pocket, but stays in the machine and circulates around other cogs as Sainsbury's spends it. But when I pay the government (tax), that money leaves the machine and disappears. Essentially, it returns to the thin air it came from. So a healthy economy would have its cogs (businesses, services etc) properly lubricated so the whole machine can hum along nicely and we all live happily ever after.

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Guest: (49 days ago)
Latest comment:

I wasn’t answering a different question - the vaccines do not exist yet which is why we shouldn’t print money to pay for them.  The question you have retreated to is “Why don’t we print money to pay for vaccines once they have been produced?”  If we’ve miraculously sorted the production issues, bought the resources, qualified labour etc, then the needed money is already spent and your question is irrelevant.  Or do you imagine that 20 million vaccines can be produced before the money is there in the supply chain?

The reason why we’re talking about vaccines is because we need them urgently, and in the case of the USA , when they finally get them how will individuals buy them?  In the UK, printing money can’t won’t get vaccines any quicker, or enable people who can’t afford them to get them, or improve our productivity, or bring money into the economy at the point when it’s most needed - so how is that for “literally useless”?  In fact, why are we talking about it now on this thread?  You haven’t asked “Why not print money to pay for the CBIL?” or “Why not print money to pay for the Brexit fall-out?”  You clearly thought the reason we don’t have vaccines is because we don’t have the money and printing it would solve everything.  After-all, we'd be getting money from thin air!!

“G ive me an estimate of how much” or “a methodology for acquiring a meaningful estimate”
An appeal to ignorance.  Inflation is definitely measurable and predictable, even if it seems like witchcraft to you.  Tell me how much money you’re planning to print, how long you’ll take to introduce it, cost per unit, pipeline elements, current production capacity, unemployment rate at that time, etc. etc.  It’s certainly complicated (there are over a dozen causal forecasting techniques) but just because you and I can’t do it doesn’t mean to say it can’t be done.  There are economists that work full-time on this kind of issue – pity them.  It isn’t just inflation - I could wax lyrical about the other monumentally risky and dangerous consequences of MMT but that’s a different debate and as I said, one that has been settled for decades by people more qualified than us. 

 “Since current UK inflation is about 1.5%, and textbook says ideal inflation is 2-3%, printing money for vaccines would have to increase inflation by more than 1.5%, otherwise it's beneficial all round.” 
Oh dear.  Back to basics again.  Theoretically, even if inflation was 0.5%, further inflation beyond productivity would be harmful as it dilutes the value of the currency.  Also, please see if Youtube has any fun animations about what inflation targets mean and why some countries have them.

A textbook is a jigsaw piece in the bigger picture. MMT is a cluster of jigsaw pieces”. 
You’re comparing a means to acquire knowledge with knowledge itself.  I am not comparing MMT to textbooks.  I am comparing textbooks about MMT, neo-Chartalism, and Keynsian economics to Youtube clips about MMT.  The former is a robust way to get an overall understanding across a complex subject, with documented routes to verify and extend your understanding.  The latter is a fun way to pass time and arguably seem a little smarter to people that have never studied the topic.

To you, I recite textbooks because I can’t understand the complexity of your clever reasoning and this theory of MMT that is fresh to you.  To me, you parrot dumbed-down Youtube clips because you don’t understand basic economic theory, you won't study it, and you can’t “apply it to the real-world”.  Catchphrases like “changing the conversation” are symptomatic of that problem.  Everything is reduced to soundbites.

I treated your question as though you were interested in an answer and I shouldn’t have.  Once again, it has ended up with me feeling as if I’m speaking to a religious evangelist or conspiracy theorist.  I appreciate you’re a firm believer, and the weight of expert economists who differ won’t change your view.  I am reassured at least by the fact that as facile as any particular Youtube clip might be, give it a month and you’ll be championing a fragment of something else.  I can’t wait.

Original comment
Latest comment:

I wasn’t answering a different question - the vaccines do not exist yet which is why we shouldn’t print money to pay for them.  The question you have retreated to is “Why don’t we print money to pay for vaccines once they have been produced?”  If we’ve miraculously sorted the production issues, bought the resources, qualified labour etc, then the needed money is already spent and your question is irrelevant.  Or do you imagine that 20 million vaccines can be produced before the money is there in the supply chain?

The reason why we’re talking about vaccines is because we need them urgently, and in the case of the USA , when they finally get them how will individuals buy them?  In the UK, printing money can’t won’t get vaccines any quicker, or enable people who can’t afford them to get them, or improve our productivity, or bring money into the economy at the point when it’s most needed - so how is that for “literally useless”?  In fact, why are we talking about it now on this thread?  You haven’t asked “Why not print money to pay for the CBIL?” or “Why not print money to pay for the Brexit fall-out?”  You clearly thought the reason we don’t have vaccines is because we don’t have the money and printing it would solve everything.  After-all, we'd be getting money from thin air!!

“G ive me an estimate of how much” or “a methodology for acquiring a meaningful estimate”
An appeal to ignorance.  Inflation is definitely measurable and predictable, even if it seems like witchcraft to you.  Tell me how much money you’re planning to print, how long you’ll take to introduce it, cost per unit, pipeline elements, current production capacity, unemployment rate at that time, etc. etc.  It’s certainly complicated (there are over a dozen causal forecasting techniques) but just because you and I can’t do it doesn’t mean to say it can’t be done.  There are economists that work full-time on this kind of issue – pity them.  It isn’t just inflation - I could wax lyrical about the other monumentally risky and dangerous consequences of MMT but that’s a different debate and as I said, one that has been settled for decades by people more qualified than us. 

 “Since current UK inflation is about 1.5%, and textbook says ideal inflation is 2-3%, printing money for vaccines would have to increase inflation by more than 1.5%, otherwise it's beneficial all round.” 
Oh dear.  Back to basics again.  Theoretically, even if inflation was 0.5%, further inflation beyond productivity would be harmful as it dilutes the value of the currency.  Also, please see if Youtube has any fun animations about what inflation targets mean and why some countries have them.

A textbook is a jigsaw piece in the bigger picture. MMT is a cluster of jigsaw pieces”. 
You’re comparing a means to acquire knowledge with knowledge itself.  I am not comparing MMT to textbooks.  I am comparing textbooks about MMT, neo-Chartalism, and Keynsian economics to Youtube clips about MMT.  The former is a robust way to get an overall understanding across a complex subject, with documented routes to verify and extend your understanding.  The latter is a fun way to pass time and arguably seem a little smarter to people that have never studied the topic.

To you, I recite textbooks because I can’t understand the complexity of your clever reasoning and this theory of MMT that is fresh to you.  To me, you parrot dumbed-down Youtube clips because you don’t understand basic economic theory, you won't study it, and you can’t “apply it to the real-world”.  Catchphrases like “changing the conversation” are symptomatic of that problem.  Everything is reduced to soundbites.

I treated your question as though you were interested in an answer and I shouldn’t have.  Once again, it has ended up with me feeling as if I’m speaking to a religious evangelist or conspiracy theorist.  I appreciate you’re a firm believer, and the weight of expert economists who differ won’t change your view.  I am reassured at least by the fact that as facile as any particular Youtube clip might be, give it a month and you’ll be championing a fragment of something else.  I can’t wait.

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Guest: (71 days ago)

Good idea.  We can print British pounds and use those to provide vaccines all over the world.

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Good idea.  We can print British pounds and use those to provide vaccines all over the world.

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Guest: (63 days ago)

NO

 

Lets print US dollars instead. Then we can use them as toilet paper :-)

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NO

 

Lets print US dollars instead. Then we can use them as toilet paper :-)

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iknowlessthanyoudo iknowlessthanyoudo (55 days ago)

The paid troll who asked the question was hired by the likes of Rand Paul or the Koch Brothers or big Pharma in the hopes that compassion for capitalism would convince socialists to become sociopathic.

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The paid troll who asked the question was hired by the likes of Rand Paul or the Koch Brothers or big Pharma in the hopes that compassion for capitalism would convince socialists to become sociopathic.

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